Music's power over pain gives it the ability to heal

This feature is part of Music and Your Mind, a series exploring how music affects your brain. Read part 1 on behavior and part 3 on torture.

(CNN)"People told me, 'You are changing me.' 'You are healing me,' " Emma Smith said.

This is the feedback Smith receives on her YouTube videos, which compile gentle sounds created by touching, tapping or stroking objects, such as hairbrushes and books.
These sounds can create an autonomous sensory meridian response, or ASMR. This is a tingling sensation, usually starting in the crown of the head and moving to other parts of the body.
    "Everyday objects all have a sound," Smith said.
    The experience is caused by a range of "triggers," including whispering, soft speaking, tapping, scratching, slow hand movements and close personal attention, reports one of the few studies into this phenomenon.
    Not everyone experiences ASMR. Smith believes it comes down to an individuals' sensitivity to sound.
    But the experience was linked to a reduced heart rate and increased skin conductance levels, offering potentially therapeutic options for mental and physical health, according to a 2018 report. Another study has shown that ASMR videos can temporarily ease symptoms of depression or chronic pain in listeners.
    The experience is about "noticing things around you" and helping people become present, she said.

    Fact: Gentle sounds like this can lower heart rate, promote relaxation and work as a sleep aid according to studies.

    As someone who was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder in 2013, Smith turned to YouTube in search of relaxation videos herself to help her sleep and feel at ease. "If I was able to sleep and be calm, I was able to focus on my therapy," she said.
    Today, Smith helps more than 670,000 video channel subscribers relax, sleep and handle pain or stress by using everyday objects to create ASMR-inducing sounds.